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Dot Org Boom

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The Dot Org Boom: A seminar on independent and networked media

Dot Org Boom media seminar in Stockholm on Tuesday 12th of April explored the relationship between grassroot media and mainstream commercial media. It was part of the PixelACHE festival.

What are the possibilities of the currently emerging new models for media production and distribution? There are currently millions of amateurs producing content which is freely available for all, how should the main stream media and policy makers react to this? The presenters in Stockholm included Naeem Mohaiemen (US, topic: independent Muslim media), Florence Devouard (France, topic: Wikipedia), Robert Stachel (Austria, topic: community tv), Kai Kuikkaniemi (Finland, topic: digitalopenandfree.org), Juha Huuskonen (Finland, topic: electronic subcultures). The seminar was organised in collaboration with Finnish Embassy in Stockholm.

"...the Net is not Yet a monolithic broadcast medium. I remain wildly optimistic about it's potential. The recent ascent of peer-to-peer networks, weblogs and free software could be a sign of a coming Internet renaissance"

- Geert Lovink, My First Recession (2003)

"a browser is also an editor
a desktop is also a server
a user is also a producer"

- Sarai media lab, free media lounge (2005)

Program tuesday 12th of april 2005[edit]

This day takes place in Stockholm, unlike the remainder of the event in Helsinki. The location in Stockholm is at the Finnish Embassy (see map).

At the embassy

9:00-9:30 Registration and coffee

9:30-10:00 Seminar introduction

Risto Repo (Press Counsellor, Embassy of Finland) and Juha Huuskonen (Director, PixelACHE Festival) will give a short introduction to the seminar program. Juha Huuskonen will introduce 'The Dot Org Boom' concept, the non-profit version of the Dot Com Boom which took place around the turn of the millenium. The essential ingredients of the Dot Org Boom are open source community, open content initiatives, media activist networks and myriads of NGOs around the world.

Morning session

10:00-12:00 Session 1 : Amateurs taking the role of the journalists and experts

Florence Nibart-Devouard (France) is an editor of WikiPedia (www.wikipedia.org), and currently serves as the Vice-Chair of the WikimediaFoundation. She will present Wikipedia, a project to build free encyclopedias in all languages of the world. It was launched in January 2001 and currently has more than 1.300.000 articles in about 140 languages. The largest Wikipedia is in English language, followed by German, Japanese and French. Wikipedia has been praised for being free, being openly accessible, covering a wide range of topics, and being detailed. It has been criticized for lack of authority versus a traditional encyclopedia, systemic bias, and for deficiencies in traditional encyclopedic topics. Wikipedia is one of the most popular reference sites on the Web, receiving around 50 million hits per day.

Naeem Mohaiemen (US) will talk about independent online Muslim media networks and their role in shaping up the "Globalized Islam". Naeem Mohaiemen is a digital-media activist and filmmaker specializing in Political Islam. He is editor of shobak.org ("Outsider Muslims"), and

Associate Editor of altmuslim.com. He is also director of VISIBLE, a collective of Muslim and Other Artist-Activists. VISIBLE premiered DISAPPEARED IN AMERICA, a film trilogy and multimedia installation about detention of American Muslims after 9/11.

12:00-13:00 Lunch

Afternoon session

13:00-15:00 Session 2 : The digital open and free

Digitalopenandfree.org is a collaborative discussion exploring the digital open and free. What is it? How it can be achieved? Why? What? Digital open and free system in its purest form is a combination of a transaction and communitication platform, various static resources and a non-profit organization. At the moment we have already open source, with the flagship Linux, which has shown that monopoly of Windows can be broken with controversial non-profit approach. Creative commons and Wikipedia are doing the same in the open content domain. But the same mechanism applies to other things also; imagine open search, open auction, or even open store! These concepts should not be labeled as communism. Destroying and preventing monopolies is defiantly a measure, that is good for well functioning capitalism. Rules have changed, and new methods are needed to bring the system in to balance.

Digitalopenandfree.org is presented by it's initiator Kai Kuikkaniemi (Finland). Kai is currently working in the digital content and communities research group of the Helsinki Institute for Information Technology,.

Robert Stachel (Austria) will give a presentation with a topic 'Community Media as online programme platforms - redefining the role of the "third tier" of TV and Radio'

When they were founded, Community Access Media were meant to become the "third tier" of Radio and Television, next to Public Service Broadcasting and commercial stations. But the requirements of a complementary media offer have changed: The programmes of most European Public Service Corporations are influenced by their competition with commercial stations. Internet took over a lot of the social and political functions that Community Media were meant to take some 15 years ago. The need for a TV platform for non-commercial content, for art and independent film, for controversial discussion and experimental forms of production seems still unsatisfied.

What can be the role of non-commercial Community media in this situation? How will they adapt to new ways of distribution on the internet and digital carriers? How could international cooperation work, what programmes could they exchange? Licencing policies, online frameworks for collaborative production, new meta data standards and easy-to-use databases are keys to future success of Community Television and Radio.

15:00-15:15 Break


15:15-16:00 Closing statements & questions

The seminar will be finished by 45 minutes dedicated for questions and closing statements.

Participating the seminar[edit]

There is no fee for participating in the seminar but it is necessary to sign in to the seminar in advance. Send and e-mail with your name, profession, e-mail address and a phone number to address dotorgboomstockholm@pixelache.ac

Address : the event takes place in the Embassy of Finland, www.finland.se, address is Gärdesgatan 11 (see map)

See also PixelACHE

More information[edit]

For more information about the seminar, please contact Juha Huuskonen, director of PixelACHE festival or Risto Repo, Press Counsellor at the Embassy of Finland.

Contact information[edit]

Embassy of Finland: risto.repo@formin.fi

PixelACHE festival: Laivurinrinne 1 00120 Helsinki

Finland tel: +358-040-5709617 / Juha Huuskonen fax: +358-9-622 79 669 www.pixelache.ac